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Archive for the ‘Carpe Diem’ Category

The witch that came (the withered hag)
To wash the steps with pail and rag
Was once the beauty Abishag,

The picture pride of Hollywood.
Too many fall from great and good
For you to doubt the likelihood.

Die early and avoid the fate.
Or if predestined to die late,
Make up your mind to die in state.

Make the whole stock exchange your own!
If need be occupy a throne,
Where nobody can call you crone.

Some have relied on what they knew,
Others on being simply true.
What worked for them might work for you.

No memory of having starred
Atones for later disregard
Or keeps the end from being hard.

Better to go down dignified
With boughten friendship at your side
Than none at all. Provide, provide!

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Eheu fugaces

As the bus passed up Willard Avenue this morning, I noted not only the fabulous feral wisteria in full bloom–twisting gracefully through the foliage by the road–but also the chokecherry trees thick with their dainty white panicles–soon to become those tiny berries relished by so many creatures. Chokecherries are also VERY popular with tent caterpillars–but there, none of us is perfect.
This riot of bloom and lush green is suddenly cut short by massive apartment buildings, which loom up on every side as you approach Friendship Heights. Lying within the maze of these brutish giants is the ghost of the street we lived on when I was a child–Wooten Avenue. There was a whole modest little neighborhood where now the huge buildings stand, long gone now, 60 years ago. Then, I lived in a little house with my dear family, and Washington was just a small town. Aunt Helen and Uncle Charlie lived in New York, and Bleecker Street around the corner was all families and bakeries. Uncle Harvie was tending his chickens in Maine—and Lawrence was running over the Sussex downs chasing his toy airplanes.

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Yesterday I was preparing the trash for its Big Day–garbage in the black bin, paper in the big blue bin, tins and bottles in the little blue bin. Quite a LOT of bottles–parties, I had been having them. As I maneuvered the various components into their correct configuration, I hit the button for opening the garage door and as it rose, it was like a curtain rising on the spring. Clouds of blossoms from the cherry tree twirled through the bright air, and–how lovely!– the small boy from across the street was dancing with his little sister through the miniature snow storm of pink petals. Such cute! I chatted with their mother, and they came in to play with the kitties for a bit.

There was a memory that was niggling at my mind, and I suddenly remembered what. Years ago, Lawrence and I went to visit Beatrice in Ios, taking the ferry from Athens. We had retired to our cabin, and were roused from our slumbers on approaching the island–“Kyrios! Kyria!” We came up on deck and saw. . . NOTHING. Complete blackness all around. We went down to the belly of the boat, where the mariners were pulling on ropes and lowering the huge door–very like a garage door–and as it drew downwards, it revealed, little by little, the bright dancing lights of the little harbour. And on the dock, walking towards us was our darling girl. Such joy!

 

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Yesterday I was lounging around doing nothing much when an idle glance at the computer told me it was NOT 11am at all, but actually….noon. The time, in fact, at which I had promised to meet someone for lunch, at a fairly distant location.
Ah yes! That vexing TIME CHANGE–which I had actually, come to think of it, discussed the night before. Obviously not a memorable discussion–or perhaps, the excitement of the occasion (a fund raising gala for my ballet studio) put all other thoughts out of my mind. It had been a pleasant festival, with many of the ladies sporting glittery gowns, and a general atmosphere of genial carnival prevailing. The food, as is usually the case at such affairs, was spectacularly poor, but the wine was poured with a generous hand, and we clapped each speaker (there were quite a few) with hearty good cheer. I ate my dinner and wrote my check, and got home not TOO much later than my usual bed time. After such mad dissipation, who would remember to set back the clocks? Not I.
dali-time-persistence.jpg
As it happened, I was only 20 minutes late for the Sunday lunch, and the rest of the day was unaffected by the time change.
NOT SO this morning, however.
When the alarm went off at 6 am (AKA 5 am) it was still pitch dark outside. This is VERY discouraging, comrades. Even the cats seemed subdued. Wondering why I was getting up an hour early, I suppose. The sun wasn’t up until it was time to leave the house.
However, such birdsong on my walk to the bus stop! Such a twittering and tweeting and chirping! Which is possibly a silver lining to this sorry business.
Hope

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Devil Granny

Today I was doing the grocery shopping, and entered an aisle just as a lady of a certain age tore open a bag of potato chips from her cart, and popped a chip into her mouth. She looked me in the eye and said “We must NEVER do this when we’re with the grandchildren”. I said “I don’t see any grandchildren.” “EXACTLY”, said she, crunching another chip with great satisfaction.

DevilGranny

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After commenting on my post about the sad All Soul’s Day ceremony, Paisley remarked that  “every minute of every hour brings me that much closer to being the honoree at just such an occasion”.

At times like these we need a dose of Mehitabel:

i know that i am bound
for a journey down the sound
in the midst of a refuse mound
but wotthehell wotthehell
oh i should worry and fret
death and i will coquette
there s a dance in the old dame yet
toujours gai toujours gai

i once was an innocent kit
wotthehell wotthehell
with a ribbon my neck to fit
and bells tied onto it
o wotthehell wotthehell
but a maltese cat came by
with a come hither look in his eye
and a song that soared to the sky
and wotthehell wotthehell
and i followed adown the street
the pad of his rhythmical feet
o permit me again to repeat
wotthehell wotthehell

my youth i shall never forget
but there s nothing i really regret
wotthehell wotthehell
there s a dance in the old dame yet
toujours gai toujours gai

1063187209_14f1236cc3.jpg

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I have been shamefully remiss–I have done the things I ought not to have done, and have not done those things that I ought to have done. The paperwork piles up, the leaves sit outside ungathered, the hoses lie about the yard promiscuously, filled with water that will freeze and destroy them.
And, the trees are ablaze with astonishing color– lemon, burgundy, crimson–I even saw a tree sporting raspberry cream the other day, it makes you faint with wonder. But did I write about it? No.
But one thing I will do, is wish a happy birthday to my dear friend Paisley, and my dear cousins Geof and Kenny!
My cats are celebrating your natal day, and wishing the very best of happy returns:

Also wondering where is the tuna cake? With the candles?

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